The Power Console (Japanese: パワーコンソール Pawākonsōru) is an unreleased peripheral developed by NEC for the PC Engine SuperGrafx game console. It was slated to be released in the Spring of 1990 with a suggested MSRP of 59,800円 JPY (equivalent to about $390 USD by 1990's exchange rates).
The Power Console is a very large peripheral, as it has many features built into it that would justify its near-60,000 yen price tag.
It connects to the SuperGrafx by slotting into its controller port, while also overlapping much of the system itself in the process.
At the center of the Power Console is a control column that has a yoke with two triggers that would have been used for playing driving games or flight simulation games, with a throttle lever to the left of it.
At the lower far left end of the unit is an eight-way joystick. On the upper left corner of the peripheral is a jog dial with three switches and LED indicators next to it.
- Action Buttons - At the lower far right end of the unit are four action buttons, labeled I, II, III, and IV, which with the joystick at the opposite end, completes a set of arcade-style controls. There are also two triggers on the grips of the control column.
- Run/Select - Below the control column are the Run and Select buttons, typical for NEC's gaming controllers for the PC Engine line of the time.
- Numerical Keypad - To the right of the control column is a sixteen-button numerical keypad, presumably for more complex games.
- Other - There are also two additional buttons below the keypad, likely Power and Reset buttons for the main SuperGrafx console.
Next to the jog dial are three switches with LED indicators.
On the upper center right area of the Power Console is a numerical LED display. The unit also features four additional controller ports for multiplayer gameplay in addition to a storage compartment for HuCard games. Because of the unit's bulkiness and potentially heavy weight, it also boasts a pair of carrying handles on the sides.
Why It Was Cancelled
The SuperGrafx, the system which the Power Console was to be released for, was a commercial failure at only 75,000 units sold, and its low userbase would not have been enough to cover the accessory's production costs.
Years after the Power Console's cancellation, it became the subject of an online April Fool's joke played by Chris Covell as a satire of, in his words, "many things, especially rare item hoarders."